Pleased to meet you...

This little story was a lesson for me in how making a mistake with your Spanish is not always bad news!

Early on in my own learning journey I’d been invited to meet some new friends so did a little bit of swatting up on my Spanish in advance of the meeting. Good old Google Translate really wasn’t a thing back then, so I’d resorted to my well-thumbed Collins Dictionary.

I had wanted to use the phrase "I’m pleased/it’s nice to meet you…" for which I found encantado. I remembered what my Spanish teacher had taught me; that things ending in ‘o’ meant I was talking about myself. So that all seemed to fit. I was ready. So off I went to meet my new amigos!

First off I was introduced to the husband of my Spanish friend. We did the customary mwah mwah fresh-air-kisses and I spouted my ‘encantado’. He looked a bit taken back, smiled, and proceeded to give me the full story of using this greeting...

There is an encantado and an encantada (masculine and feminine versions). The ending relates to the person saying the word. So I would always be encantada and he would always be encantado!

This conversation has never left me, more than 17 years on! For you, it can bring two learning points. Firstly, how to greet people correctly and secondly to never be afraid of having a go. Maybe you'll make a few mistakes but remember to accept correction as a positive on your learning journey rather than a criticism. As I often say, every day is a school day!